‘It is what it is’: Shooting victim shares story after escaping attempted carjacking

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A woman who was shot in the face during an attempted carjacking is sharing her story, grateful for a virtual community rallying around her during recovery.

Nicknamed the “GOAT” by friends on the mobile game Pokémon Go, Donna is in good spirits. That is, considering less than a week ago she was the victim of a shooting and attempted carjacking in Knoxville.

Donna doesn’t want to share her last name, but shared her story.

The attempted carjacking happened on North Central Street around 6:45 p.m. Friday night.

Donna was sitting in her vehicle when a black truck pulled into the parking lot.

“I saw a truck drive by, but it just drove in and drove out. I didn’t think nothing about it. It must’ve been turning around,” Donna said.

According to reports from Knoxville Police, now confirmed by Donna, the truck came back and entered the parking lot. It drove over to her car. A man exited the passenger side of the truck and approached, pointing a handgun at her through the window.

“Then I looked up and I saw that there the guy stood at the door of the window with a gun. I looked over he was yelling at me, I don’t know what he was saying,” said Donna.

She attempted to get to the passengers side of her vehicle, and in the process, her door unlocked. The man got inside.

“I reached down… he was in that on top of me to try to keep me from changing the gear shift. Next thing I heard was a ‘kapow,’ I didn’t even know I was hit at first,” Donna said.

Donna shows her Pokémon Go stats. Her friends dubbed her the “GOAT.”

A KPD spokesperson says the suspect fired multiple times, hitting her once. Donna’s realization happened when she got down the block, away from the attacker.

“I only had a hole in my nose, it wasn’t like I couldn’t function,” Donna said.

She called 911, followed by family and friends. She said she didn’t want them to worry about her when she didn’t show up for work or plans the next day.

“I’m not gonna quit playing, I might have a gun now,” Donna said.

The Knoxville Pokémon Go community is rallying around Donna’s recovery efforts, raising money for her medical bills.

She had her first surgery on Saturday and will likely need more surgery.

The suspect is described as a man in his early 20’s with dreadlocks. The truck was described as a black Dodge Ram 1500 with a shiny gas tank cover.

Anyone with any information is asked to call KPD’s Crime Hotline at 865-215-7212.

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